About Corazon

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Trip to Buckskin Joe's

Today our family took a trip up to the Royal Gorge area to visit the famous old west town, Buckskin Joe's. To be honest, this visit was a little bitter/sweet because it was revealed just a couple of weeks ago that Buckskin Joe's will be closing its doors forever on September 12 (tomorrow), after 52 years of business. Needless to say, we were sure glad that we got to be a part of this unique tourist attraction before it went the way of the Dodo bird. Here are a few pics:

The first part of our trip was the train ride out to the Royal Gorge. The train is small but it takes you right out to the edge of the Gorge. Here's the family out at the viewing area. Pretty impressive view.

And here is a short video of our train ride out to the edge of the Royal Gorge:

As you can tell from the video, the Royal Gorge is quite impressive. However, the place we stopped was NOT part of the Royal Gorge tour. That's a trip we are saving for next summer. You may not be able to see it in the video but off in the distance is a large bridge that crosses the gorge. In addition, there is a tram that goes across and DOWN the side of the gorge. It should be a lot of fun to visit!

And after the train ride it was off to Buckskin Joe.
The buildings at Buckskin Joe are almost all originals from the time period. Some have been preserved for over 100 years now and stand as a beautiful monument to a time now extinct. Those who have cared for this "city" for over 50 years have done a magnificent job of recreating the era, not to mention their efforts to preserve the buildings, carriages, etc. Kudos to them all for their diligent work. One can only hope that the new owner will show half as much care.
The "Main Street" of Buckskin Joe where all of the gunfights and hangings are held.
Mom and Zakary in jail.
The Gold Nugget Restaurant, where we ate some DELCICIOUS buffalo burgers. If you've never had buffalo then you've never really lived. It's far more delicious (and nutritious) than cow.
One of the things that has always fascinated me about 19th century America is the "Cult of Domesticity" that many women were expected to follow. Most of the magazines, broadsides, etc. of this time often demonstrated and encouraged women on how they were to carry themselves. Needless to say, many of these social "graces" were less-than-comfortable, especially in the emerging west.
Another shot of Main Street.
Off we go on the horse ride!
Jaxson and Zakary shooting guns at the indoor range.
Here is an old school house with the original books, desks, etc.
In addition to serving as a tourist site, Buckskin Joe has also been used as a movie set on many different occasions. Here is a list of some of the actors/actresses who have taken to the stage at Buckskin Joe.

This trip was an absolute blast! What a fantastic way to close out a summer! Thanks to everyone at Buckskin Joe's for your years of dedication to preserving something that is truly unique. Even after the buildings are gone the memories will remain forever. To close it out, here's a clip of one of Buckskin Joe's final public "hangings." Enjoy:

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